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Young’s other lasting memory centered on the tension involving Muslims in the months that followed.

“Certain people were targeted,” he said. “There was a lot of hatred going around, a lot of misunderstanding about why it happened. A lot of anger.”

For Olsen, it’s hard to believe 10 years have passed since he returned home early from his Staten Island middle school and heard his mother, Joanne, say that dad was going downtown to the fire.

Andy Olsen almost certainly would have been in harm’s way, but he was promoted to lieutenant on Sept. 8, 2001. He began the week at officer’s training in Queens. After the call went out for all hands to get to the towers, he had to go get his gear and fight the chaos on the way to the fire. The towers came down before he arrived.

“Ultimately that kind of saved his life,” Olsen said.

The Olsen family wasn’t always sure of his safety, though. Andy didn’t contact his wife and kids for 30 hours after he reported to the scene.

“I don’t want to seem super dramatic and say we were fearing the worst, but that was always in our mind,” Eric said. “We were trying to stay positive.”

When Andy did come home, he was deeply affected. He had witnessed the gruesome manifestation of hatred. Co-workers and friends with whom he played softball were gone.

In the weeks after the attacks, he attended more than 50 funerals.

“He had survivor’s guilt for a little while — why did he get to survive?” Olsen said. “These guys have sons just like he does. It’s such similar families. To see that kind of thing happen was crazy.”

The pain caused by the attacks has lost its sharp edge over time. Not that Eric Olsen wants to completely forget.

It’s part of who he is and where he came from.

“When I bring friends that it’s their first time in New York, I say, ‘Listen when I tell you that these buildings used to be double the size of all these buildings down here,’” he said. “They were so big.”